Muscle Pain When You Exercise Too Much

June 7, 2019
Although exercise is very important for your health, exercising your muscles too much can actually be counterproductive. You could run into problems if you don't rest enough. 

When you incorporate regular exercise into your daily routine, you’ll see that it brings great physical, mental, and emotional benefits. However, if you abuse this activity or do it in excess, it can be detrimental to your health. Keep reading to find out what happens to your muscles when you exercise too much.

Exercise Recommendations

The types of exercises and quantity of repetitions you do will always depend on your personal circumstances and abilities, be it your age, lifestyle, or any illnesses you might have.

For this reason, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that adults do at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic exercise per week. Otherwise, you can do 75 minutes of high-intensity exercise per week to strengthen the main muscle groups.

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What Happens to Muscles When You Exercise Too Much

Woman with muscle pain exercise too much

Muscles are comprised of soft, bendable tissues that allow for the movement, stability, and structure of bone and joints in the body. Additionally, there are many different shapes and sizes of muscles, which represent practically half of a person’s body weight.

After putting muscles through too much exercise, what’s referred to as delayed onset muscle soreness, or DOMS, may appear. This is usually caused by contractions of the muscles.

This often occurs in people who haven’t been working out for a long time or due to a seasoned athlete’s sudden increase in the intensity or quantity of exercise they’re doing.

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What Causes This Muscle Pain?

Eccentric contractions are what happens when the muscle stretches at the same time as it contracts. A clear example of this is when a person is used to running frequently on flat surfaces and jogs up a hill. The next day, this person will definitely have muscle pain because their body is used to exercising on a flat surface.

This pain is due to micro-tears in the muscles. Additionally, it can appear when you put more strain than usual on your muscles, due to stretching and contracting them excessively when you exercise too much.

If you exercise too much, you run a greater risk of injuring your muscles. Possible injuries could include pulled or even torn muscles. For this reason, the intensity of your exercises has to be appropriate and harmonious.

Additionally, make sure your workouts are safe and protective of your physical health.

Recommendations for Preventing Muscle Pain

1. Don’t ignore the pain.

Lower the intensity of your training sessions. This is the only way to keep your muscles healthy and make sure you’re not running the risk of injuring yourself.

If you continue to exercise at such high intensity, your ligaments and joints won’t be able to rest adequately. As a result, you’ll increase your risk for muscle pulls and tears. 

2. Alleviate the pain and rest if you exercise too much.

Take a hot bath or enjoy the sauna at the gym. This will help alleviate your pain and relax your muscles. Additionally, the heat will help eliminate toxins and release endorphins.

Don’t forget to rest. This is essential if you want the affected muscles to be able to recover.

3. Use cold and hot compresses if you exercise too much.

Before beginning your physical activity, put a cold compress on the area where you’re feeling muscle pain. Later, when you finish your workout, place a hot compress in the same place to help the muscles relax.

In addition to this, you can also use gels or creams with calming ingredients, which will be very useful for any discomfort.

4. Add a warm-up routine.

To try and prevent muscle pain, make sure you always warm up before starting any workout. Additionally, when you finish your workout, stretch to relax your muscles.

When you’re practicing a certain exercise routine, increase the intensity little by little. It’s also essential to do this exercise frequently.

This way, you’ll rarely suffer from muscle pain. It’s very important to give your body enough time to adapt to greater demands.

5. Take care of yourself.

Exercise too much gym bag full of stuff take care of your body especially your muscles

If you want to get in better shape and improve your emotional and mental health, you must always bear in mind that it’s essential that you love, take care of, and respect your body. Do this in the healthiest and safest way possible.

Don’t demand more from your body than it can give. Anything in excess is harmful, so don’t exercise too much. Establish a varied and complete training program. Your workouts should last at least 30 minutes per day and adapt to your physical condition.

This way, you’ll be able to increase the intensity of your exercise gradually. As a result, you’ll be able to reach the fitness goals you’ve made. Additionally, you’ll successfully increase your strength, toning, flexibility, and volume of your muscles, as well as the endurance of your tendons and ligaments.

Getting some exercise will not only improve your appearance in general. Additionally, exercise is also very beneficial for your posture. You’ll have more energy to do every single one of your daily activities.

That being said, don’t forget to take care of your muscles: don’t exercise too much!

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  • Muñoz Ch., Sara. (2002). LESIONES MUSCULARES DEPORTIVAS: DIAGNOSTICO POR IMAGENES. Revista chilena de radiología8(3), 127-132. https://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0717-93082002000300006
  • Verdugo P., Marco Antonio. (2004). CLASIFICACION ULTRASONOGRAFICA DE LOS DESGARROS MUSCULARES. Revista chilena de radiología10(2), 53-57. https://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0717-93082004000200004